On Marriage and Relationships
Together at 22, separated at 32. That’s me.
I thought I was settling down when I moved in with my then boyfriend at the age of 22. A year later, I was a mom. There was a ceremony, a civil wedding. But due to some errors in the paperwork and records, the registration was put off until we’ve totally forgotten about it, confident that we will soon have a church wedding anyway. We rarely fought; money was never an issue. Our families adored and respected our relationship. But after two daughters and 10 years of being together, the marriage never happened. Due to circumstances we couldn’t control, we decided to call it off and go on separate ways but promised to be co-parenting to our kids.
We blamed it to being too young and carefree. But 10 years back, we were oblivious of these things. We thought we were ready. As long as we support each other, we’d get by. We were confident we’d make it through. Time went by and it felt like home, until it wasn’t anymore. We couldn’t point out when and why it ended up the way it did. Was it because we weren’t right for each other? Or because we felt like we weren’t right for each other? Or maybe because we weren’t looking at life through rose-tinted glasses anymore?
Marriage is probably one of the biggest decisions one can ever make. But when is it ideal to settle down?
Is it when we are at the right age? But what is the right age? at legal age?20s? 30s? 40s? Is there such a thing as being too old or too young? Besides, age doesn’t guarantee maturity to take on the role. How about the age differences of the couple? Two can’t be at exactly the same pace.
Is it when we are financially stable? Nowadays, being self-sufficient is a huge thing but being stable and capable to support a family is another matter. How much does it cost to raise a family? And what standard can guarantee that marriage would work? is having everything in place such as owning a house, savings, and a comfortable lifestyle enough to make it work?
Is it when we found the person who we consider as our ideal match?Is the right one the person who makes our heart flutter or the person who makes us feel secure? Sometimes, these are two different people. And they say, the fluttering of the heart and curling of the toes only last for a while.Marriage may start from romance, but after that, it requires a lot of work.
Long engagements nor the longevity of the marriage isn’t a guarantee for a lifelong commitment. Many married couples divorce or decide to end their relationships for various reasons. A ceremony, not even a legal bind, doesn’t stop people from wanting to get out of it. Not even having children. Marriage is a commitment and a choice that can change lives in many ways.
Some couples have really inspiring stories on being able to stay together through thick or thin, who weathered the storms in their lives. That’s not being lucky; thats making a choice – a choice to stay in a relationship and work hard for it. It’s not a good fortune that just drops on one’s lap. It takes loyalty, faithfulness and hard work.
On the other hand, some people decide to stay married not because they are still crazy about each other, but because it is convenient to be so. For some, it’s because they are afraid to start all over again. It isn’t exactly the relationship that they don’t want to end but because they feel sorry for all the time and effort they have invested.But the biggest factor might be children. We are in a society where a family is supposed to be composed of a father, a mother and children. Other than that, is it less than ideal. Furthermore, there’s still a stigma against single parents especially mothers. Is that case, will continuing the marriage a good idea? Will it still be healthy? Will it really be better for the kids?
Nobody knows. Perhaps, we are never ready. It takes a lot of time and effort to make things work.Only us can tell ourselves whether we are ready or not, or if we are even into it.